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Lady Tigers near end of year, play home finale Friday

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With a 49-37 loss to Wharton closing last week’s play, the Sealy girls’ basketball team enters this week with only three games remaining in the season.

Owning a 3-6 mark within District 25-4A puts the Lady Tigers fifth behind the 6-3 Fulshear Lady Chargers who will serve as Friday night’s opponent in the last home game at Sealy High School.

Head coach Anthony Branch’s lone senior, Zoee Jeffrey, has been sidelined all year but has played a crucial role in helping lead the team that will return next year in a likely similar shape.

Before then, his squad has to hit the finish line strong which was one of the things he was pleased with after last Friday night’s loss.

“They always keep fighting, they never stop believing they can’t win,” Branch said. “They keep competing and playing hard and trying to do things we want them to.”

One of those things Branch and his staff wanted was to keep one of Wharton’s top scorers, J’Kayla Davis, from taking over the game which was accomplished in the first half with only three points to her credit.

It was the second half, and the beginning of the fourth quarter specifically, where she got the rest of her 17 points on the night. After an eight-point third quarter, Davis opened the final frame with a 9-4 run of her own, extending the visiting Lady Tigers’ 12-point advantage with time running down.

“She earned every point she got, she really only got one clean look the rest of the night she had tough looks,” Branch said of Davis’ performance. “We threw all that we could at her. I think she’s the MVP, she earned everything and played really well. Last time we played she didn’t score a three, but I knew she could get some and I was hoping to keep her under 20 tonight.”

Eastlynn Cloud and Megan Schaaf shouldered much of the load in attempting to contain the ever-dangerous Davis and Branch applauded their efforts.

“I thought Eastlynn and Megan fought their tails off trying to compete with her and battle with her,” he said. “I thought they did a great job defending her and giving all that they could.”

At the end of the day, it was turnovers and missed shots that wrote the tale of Sealy’s sixth loss in district play.

“The thing that we struggle with is the live-ball turnovers and our passes are off,” the head coach said. “We’re trying to catch it one-handed; we’re shooting ourselves in the foot. Let the great plays happen but we’ve got to grab it with two hands first.”

The Lady Tigers have El Campo, Fulshear and Stafford remaining on the schedule with the final home game of the year this Friday night.

“We’re trying beat these teams,” Branch said of what the rest of the season holds. “I just want these kids to get a win against a good, quality team because they deserve it. They work hard, they believe in each other and they believe in what we want.”

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